A spiritual “mountain-top experience” can be regarded as a momentary, distinct encounter with the living God that is intended to give us new awareness of His authenticity and intimacy. As our children go to camp, the mountain-top experience can become a reality for them. As parents, we have the joy to assist our children in the reentry process that reinforces what they have experienced.
Engaging in conversations with your child about camp experiences will:
- Assist in the collision that occurs when “camp” life collides with “real” life.
- Help you grasp the timely opportunity to listen to your child and learn about their experiences.
- Allow them to grieve the change away from constant community with Christian friends.
- Give them space to put God’s movement in their lives into words, which helps move them from a powerful experience toward next steps found in a daily walk with Him.
- Allow them to know you as a parent who loves doing life with them.
- Serve as a catalyst for ongoing conversations that build trust and a stronger relationship.
Here are five questions to ask when your child gets home from camp:
- What are 3 words or phrases that describe how you’re feeling about camp?
- What was your favorite part of camp? Why?
- What was one conversation (with a friend, adult, or as a group) that happened that stands out?
- Did you get a new understanding of God’s character or a truth about Him? If so, what? What was your biggest take away?
- What are 3 things I can pray about for you over the next few days as you continue to process your experience?
As parents, we have the incredible privilege of having a front row seat to our children’s lives. Be aware that students and children process experiences at various speeds and the richest conversations might come several days after the event. Be observant when their hearts open for ongoing dialog. As your child takes up the shield of faith (Ephesians 6:16), be reminded to take it up yourself, too. For them to know that you will stand alongside and “lock shields” with them as a brother or sister in Christ is a weighty encouragement. You are in their corner!
Praying for great conversations!